Biography
    

Was born in Cairo in 1957 to Nubian (Egyptian/Sudan) parents. Since graduating in 1984, he has lived in Edinburgh, United Kingdom, and currently works between Italy and United Kingdom.

     Over the past 40 years he has participated in numerous solo and group shows in Italy (Including the 1988 Venice biennale), Belgium, Denmark, Egypt, Great Britain and New York. Recent solo exhibitions include “Faces and Voices”, John Rylands library, Manchester (2012) Fathi Hassan: transformation, Skoto gallery New York (2011); Fathi Hassan, Leighton house museum (2010); “Tasaheel", Centro d'arte l'idioma, Ascoli Piceno (2010); "Kenuz", Domus Artis, Naples (2009) and a solo show at the Museo Nazionale Villa Pisani, stra, Venice (2008). Group shows include: “Summer Exhibitions “Royal Academy, London (2012); Rose Issa projects at Abu Dhabi art (2011); “Text Messages” at the October gallery, London (2006); and an installation at the Smithsonian national museum of African Art, Washington dc (2002). His work is in the permanent collection of the Victoria & Albert museum and the British museum, London and the Smithsonian national museum of African art, Washington dc and Farjam collections.

     In his drawings, paintings, sculptures and installations, Hassan experiments with the written and spoken word, exploring the theme of ancient languages erased by colonial domination. With invented, kufic-inspired scripts, he plays with the symbols, textures and calligraphy of his Nubian heritage to explore the space between graphic symbolism and literal meaning in vibrant colors and collage.

     As well as the solo show, "Fathi Hassan: “Haram Aleikum", curated by Rose Issa projects at Leighton house museum, London (2010), he has participated in “The Seven Valleys”, Rose Issa projects, London (2013); “Re-Orientations ii”, Rose Issa projects, London (2012); "Arabicity " curated by Rose Issa projects at the Beirut exhibition center, Lebanon, and "Arabicity - such a near east" curated by Rose Issa projects at the bluecoat art centre, Liverpool (2010).

     He is the subject of the publications “Fathi Hassan” edited by Rose Issa (Beyond art Production, 2010); “Fathi Hassan” by Achille Bonito Oliva and Luigi Meneghelli (Charta, 2000) and “Fathi Hassan” edited by Enrico Crispolti (Edizioni Della Rovere, 2002). He also features in the publications “Arabicity” (Rose Issa projects and Beyond Art Production in collaboration with Beirut exhibition center, 2010); “Egyptian Artists” written and published by books llc (2010); “Sudanese Artists" written and published by books llc (2010); "Modern Egyptian art 1910-2003" by Lillian Karnouk (American university in Cairo press; 2005) and "contemporary Egyptian Art" by Lillian karnouk.

In 1979, he received a grant from the Italian Cultural Institute in Cairo and moved to Italy. He enrolled at the Accademia di Belle Arti of Naples in 1980 to study set design having found that the painting course was full. He graduated in 1984 with a thesis on the influence of African art in Cubism. While he was studying and in the year after graduating, Hassan also worked as an actor and set designer at RAI (Radiotelevisione Italiana works) in Naples and Rome .In 1986, he moved to Pesaro.

Hassan is one of the artists of the African Diaspora. Hassan received recognition from the Ministry of Culture (Egypt) in 1989, and he was the first artist to be selected to represent Africa at the "Aperto '88" section of the Venice Biennale. Chosen by Dan Cameron, Giovanni Crandant. He has exhibited in numerous galleries in Italy, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, France, Egypt, and United States., International TV "UNINETTUNO" telematic university, presents, transmision on the theme "inside L, soul".

Hassan's work often emphasizes power relations and the relationship between the oral and written word; drawing upon his Nubian heritage and installations, he places particular emphasis on the loss of language under the dominance of empire. Most of his scripts are based upon kufic calligraphy, but remain deliberately illegible and impossible to decipher. In his video Blessed Nubia the original language of the Egyptian region Nubia was analyzed. Hassan has lived and worked in Italy since graduating in 1984, dividing his time between Rome, Milan and Fano.

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